ARToolKit is made available under a dual-license model. As it has been since the first public release of version 1.0, ARToolKit is freely available for non-commercial use under the terms of the GNU General Public License. A proprietary version of ARToolKit developed in parallel for professional commercial use by ARToolworks, Inc. is made available under different license terms, to suit end-user need.
We believe this model offers the best of both worlds. Persons developing their software under an open source model are freely availed of the ARToolKit source code, and the ARToolKit open source project benefits in return from enhancements, bug reports, and external development ideas. Those persons developing under a proprietary source model, from whom the ARToolKit code base does not benefit through reciprocal openness, contribute financially instead. License fees fund research and development of today's and tomorrow's versions of the ARToolKit through research activities at partner institutions.
ARToolKit versions 1.0 through 2.x are available under the GPL. Please read the full text of the GPL prior to downloading and/or using the ARToolKit source code. Your downloading and/or use of the code signifies acceptance of the terms and conditions of the license. If you are unable to comply with the license terms, please immediately destroy all copies of the code in your possession.
Please be aware that while the GPL allows you to freely use the source code, it also imposes certain restrictions on the way in which you can use the code. Your attention is drawn particularly to section 2b of the GPL: "You must cause any work that you distribute or publish, that in whole or in part contains or is derived from the Program or any part thereof, to be licensed as a whole at no charge to all third parties under the terms of this License.", i.e. your software incorporating or linking to ARToolKit must also be open-source software, licensed under the GPL. Use of the ARToolKit in breach of the terms of the GPL will be subject to legal action by the copyright holders.
In response to demand from toolkit users, the holders of the copyright on much of the ARToolKit version 1.0 - 2.x code have elected to make this code and other substantially advanced ARToolKit and AR code available under proprietary licenses for professional and commercial use by persons for whom the GPL license is not ideal. These license arrangements are managed by ARToolworks, Inc., Seattle, WA, USA. A variety of license types are available at reasonable cost. Please contact ARToolworks, Inc. directly for information on products, license terms, and pricing.
ARToolworks also provide a variety of value-added services, including professional support, customization and other modifications, and end-user turnkey applications.